Daily Expenses Allowance income assessment for international protection applicants

23 May 2024


In June 2024, the Department of Social Protection will introduce an income assessment for the Daily Expenses Allowance for international protection applicants.

The Daily Expenses Allowance is a social welfare payment for people who have applied for international protection in Ireland and who live in, or are on a waiting list for, State provided accommodation. The rate of the allowance is €38.80 per week for an adult and €29.80 per week for a child. A temporary rate of €113.80 per week is available for people who are currently without State accommodation and are on a waiting list. There are currently 1923 people awaiting an offer of accommodation.

The income assessment will be applicable to people aged 18 years or older and will assess income from employment, self-employment and social welfare payments. The Daily Expense Allowance payment will no longer be provided where an individual has an income of more than €125 per week for a combined total of 12 weeks or more.

International protection applicants are not entitled to the same social welfare payments as Irish nationals. Applicants (who have not yet been granted status in Ireland) who receive the Daily Expenses Allowance may also qualify for Additional Needs Payments.

In mid-2018, international protection applicants were granted permission to access employment in Ireland, marking a significant change in how Ireland provides reception to applicants. Currently, an international protection applicant can apply for labour market access six months after lodging an application, as long as a first-instance recommendation has not been made on their application and the delay cannot be attributed to the applicant. Read more about labour market integration of international protection applicants in EMN Ireland’s 2023 report. Once protection is granted, the person has a right to live and work in Ireland on the same basis as an Irish citizen and is entitled to apply for any social welfare payment appropriate to their circumstances subject to the relevant rules and conditions.

This announcement follows other measures announced earlier this month which the government states are aimed to respond to the increasing numbers of people seeking international protection. This includes increased targeted workplace inspections in sectors where there is increased risk or reports of noncompliance with employment, workplace and permit regulations. Results of several reviews by the Department of Justice are expected to be published soon, including a review airline fines, safe countries and visa free travel from countries with significant application numbers in Ireland. Further staffing measures for the International Protection Office are planned to support decision making of applications for international protection.

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